A long-time friend and client struggling with hair-loss was the impetus for Bruce Fisher, owner of Fisher Experience Salon & Day Spa in Braintree, Massachusetts, to begin researching restoration systems. “At 8-years-old, ‘Mary’ had psoriasis, so a family member put coal tar shampoo on her head and left it on so long that it hardened. She went to a doctor who ripped it off her head, pulling the scalp and hair right off. For 40 years, she wore her hair in a ponytail to cover the hair loss that resulted.”
While seeking a solution for his client, Fisher learned of the Evolve Volumizer, a non-invasive hair restoration system that requires neither chemicals nor adhesives. Each Volumizer is constructed of 100 percent human hair, which is hand-tied to a stretchable, breathable poly-mesh base. The piece is custom-fit to a client’s head, can be ordered in different textures, densities and colors to achieve a natural look, and can be worn with or without extensions. A client with less than 50 percent hair loss is a candidate, as the piece is integrated into the hair by weaving existing hair into and out of the Volumizer via a 38-point anchoring system.
With the Evolve Volumizer, says Fisher, “’Mary’ is over the moon. She is so happy and looks so beautiful. You would never know she had it in.” These results aren’t unique, according to Fisher. “Once women learn about it and they’re in need of it, that’s a homerun right there.”
After the system is installed, clients return to the salon every four or five weeks to have the Volumizer reset. As the reset is purely a service and doesn’t require any additional hair, salons stand to make sizeable profits with the system. According to Evolve President Sue Hanson, salons are charging between $1000 to $1800 per client for the initial installation of the Volumizer, which costs the salon $509 and, for a reset, just slightly more than their standard haircut and blow dry price. The reset can be done in 45 minutes by a trained stylist, and can accompany a color appointment, if necessary.
“If you have 10 clients who integrate the system into their hair, you could realize $30,000 in gross annual revenue when initial installation, maintenance and retail products are considered,” says Fisher. While he is just in the beginning phases of implementing the system into his salon, he anticipates quadrupling his Evolve business within the year with continued advertising.
Building the Books
One challenge Fisher recognized, however, was finding the clients who could benefit from this service. “The demand is fierce—you just have to find it. Women that don’t have much hair, they don’t go to beauty salons. They don’t want to go in and see women with beautiful hair, and walk out disappointed that they can’t have a particular look. You really have to go out and scout for these women (via social media, email blasts and ads). Once you’ve have them as a client, it’s fantastic, because they’re very loyal.”
Jyl Craven, owner and stylist at Jyl Craven Hair design in Canton, Georgia, gained roughly 30 new clients within a year by advertising in magazines distributed to local senior communities. Craven liked that the system was easy to care for, caused no damage to existing hair, and didn’t increase the risk of more hair loss. Today, she has 12 Evolve-certified stylists on her team. “The system is a total game-changer for stylists financially, emotionally, in every way,” Craven says. “Many stylists are humanitarians and when you give someone hair who has either lost it or never had it, it’s incredibly fulfilling.”
Jyl Craven Hair charges $1500 for an initial installation, and $100 for a reset. While the investment is significant for clients, many don’t blink an eye at the cost, according to Craven. “Fortunately and unfortunately, there are many women who could benefit from the Volumizer,” she says. Alopecia affects more than 6.5 million people in the U.S. alone, according to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation.
The Volumizer, which launched in 2011, recently became available with an invisible part, selling to salons for $599. This upgrade to the basic version allows clients the choice of a right, left or center part, lending a more natural look, according to Craven.
Education and Training
The company offers three-day certification classes across the country for $1500, with an early-registration discount of $150 and the option of paying in three installments. Tuition covers all tools necessary for training, and curriculum includes hands-on installation techniques, full-day hair cutting, as well as education on marketing oneself as an Evolve-certified stylist.
Editor's Note: There are approximately 150 Evolve-certified salons in the U.S. and Canada. For details on distribution and carrying the product, visit Evolve.evolvinghair.com or call 866-779-2880.